My new (ICD-related) post is up over at Trials and Fibrillations

I’m still working on recapping the Heart Rhythm Society sessions from last month. It was an incredible meeting that offered vast amounts of worthwhile information. So much really–for patients, generalists and specialists alike.

Part 2 of my favorite ICD-related posts from HRS 2012 is now posted over at Trials and Fibrillations at

It touches upon a few of the device-related abstracts that piqued my interest.

Highlights include:

  • The importance of sleep apnea in causing arrhythmias in patients with heart disease. Numerous studies in Cardiology have emphasized the importance of diagnosing and treating sleep disorders. The issue with sleep apnea is that low oxygen levels wreak havoc on our organs.
  • The expanding and highly useful role of remote monitoring. One of the rarely talked about features of modern-day cardiac devices is their wireless monitoring capabilities. These sensors can often alert both patient and doctor of trouble in its early stages. I describe a real case of mine where a remote alert from a pacemaker might have prevented a stroke.
  • A look at ICD complications, including the risk of doing ICD lead revisions, the role of gender in susceptibility to perforation, and of course…I found a few studies that highlight the benefits of watchful waiting strategies–the let a sleeping dog sleep approach.


3 replies on “My new (ICD-related) post is up over at Trials and Fibrillations”

“The issue with sleep apnea is that low oxygen levels wreak havoc on our organs.”

Why then can athletes derive benefits from low oxygen training? I was under the
impression that the body responds by forcing veinous growth and distribution
through muscle and surrounding tissue. Are skin divers harming themselves by
prolonged submersion?

Thanks, Tom

BELOW Comment I just posted on site:

CLINICAL APPLICATION of your point about OSA (Obstructive Sleep Apnea) – IF you see bradyarrhythmias including pauses (as well as runs of VT) during the early morning hours when you inspect telemetry tracings on morning rounds from the night before – THINK OF OSA. As you state – Treatment of OSA may “cure” these arrhythmias (as well as lower blood pressure, relieve headaches, daytime sleepiness and cardio-protect).

Would seem that REMOTE monitoring may also detect abnormal brady as well as tachy episodes – for diagnosis of sick sinus (and perhaps, as per above – suggesting OSA as an underlying diagnosis in some patients … ).

Finally – GREAT points you make about Inappropriate shocks! THANKS for the Updates – : ) Ken

I guess this is why my cardiologist practically danced when he saw that I’d had a sleep study and was currently using a CPAP machine.

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